May 7, 2006 Subject:
Now it's your turn to be old, Jim
In this well-meaning but patronizing film, a postwar familys life is strained when the wifes dad moves in with them. Son Bobby complains that since Grandpas moved in its no fun here anymore! And husband Jim gives wife Dottie an ultimatum: this is a house for children, not for an old man! Poor Grandpa struggled to support his family during the Depression and what does he get for his trouble? A spoiled grandson who only wants to watch TV, a snooty little granddaughter who resents the time her mom spends looking after Grandpa and an insulting, loud-mouthed son-in-law. The unctuous narrator piles on a lot of insulting platitudes about old ageold people (this film doesnt mince its words) have no reason for life, and are alone, unwanted, useless. The film cuts to scenes shot in an idealized Old Peoples Home (this film was made before the term senior citizens was invented). Well-dressed, spry old people weave baskets and do woodwork for the camera. In this film (probably written and produced by young adults), the elderly are seen as incapable of any kind of agency and nothing but a burden on the young. Jim and Dottie go talk to a female social worker about Grandpa instead of asking him directly what he wants. Hed probably rather sleep on a park bench than live with his daughters obnoxious family. And in the end, he gets blamed for his predicament! According to the social worker, he should have started planning for his old age twenty years earlier. Thats right, during the 1930s when he and most Americans had nothing, he should have been saving money so that he wouldnt be a burden in his old age. Obviously, the social worker was a Republican. In the late forties, when this film was made, the elderly were a smaller proportion of the population. Younger people like Jim felt no compunction about pushing them aside.
February 6, 2006 Subject:
A Place To Live
A Place To Live, is a 1948 sensative film dealing with inadequate housing for families that deserve adequate conditions. It is well written, directed, acted, and filmed.
May 28, 2005 Subject:
And a place to die!!
Pretty amazing tale, filled with TV actors from the 50's, of a husband and a wife's problems about what to do with dear old Dad when he's living with them and becomes sick. Finally, they resort to seeing a 'person with training and experience who could lead the way'. Their position is'nt dealt explained at all during this film and who's office seems to be, uh, padded. They explain their problems, and soon the husband, who is smoking one butt after the other in the office, breaches the evil subject of putting dad in a home, which the wife character finally feels it's time to really chew the scenery by screeching "I couldn't make him go there! What kind of place could it be!??" (she throws her hands into her face, and trumpets wail!). The counsellor/whatever states that these places are all right, they've got a place of their own, even though the rooms that the seniors have in the faciluties looks similarily like the room dear old dad was staying in in the first place.
All of this melodrama is sandwiched between a documentary about the glorifications of putting your rejected loved ones in a home. You'll have friends! You'll be able to do things! It's odd that the seniors can't do anything until they are placed in the home, then they become social butterflies and activity horses. Very odd, and highly reccomended!